How to Cook Brisket Slowly With a Roaster

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Thinly sliced or shredded brisket topped with BBQ sauce makes a delicious sandwich.
Thinly sliced or shredded brisket topped with BBQ sauce makes a delicious sandwich. (Image: Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images)

Cut from just below the shoulder, brisket is a tougher cut of meat that requires long, slow cooking to fully enjoy. Though sometimes sold whole, briskets are usually butchered and packaged as halves. The flat half, also labeled as first, flat or thin cut, is trimmed of most of the fat. When slow cooked, this leaner brisket is easily cut into slices. The point half, which still has the fat, usually shreds after slow cooking, making it ideal for use in sandwiches and tacos. Also packaged as second, nose, thick or front cut, this fattier cut is a good choice to use when roasting -- the fat helps maintain moisture and adds to the beefy flavor of the brisket.

Things You'll Need

  • Brisket
  • Spices
  • Aluminum foil, heavy duty
  • Instant-read thermometer

Preheat an electric roaster oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Trim the brisket to fit in the roaster, so that the meat will not touch the sides of the insert pan. A brisket that is 4 pounds or less is best suited for most roaster ovens.

Combine the spices called for in your brisket recipe. Paprika, garlic, chili powder, cumin and pepper pair well with brisket, lending a subtle heat and depth of flavor. A small amount of brown sugar will add a touch of sweetness to the beef.

Rub the spice mixture evenly all over the brisket. Wrap the brisket with aluminum foil, crimping the edges to ensure the foil remains closed during the roasting process.

Place the wrapped brisket in the insert pan that came with your roaster oven. Cover with the lid and roast until the internal temperature of the beef reaches 160 F -- approximately 4 hours. Cooking slowly allows the connective tissues to break down, resulting in a tender and juicy cut of beef.

Allow the brisket to rest for 15 minutes prior to removing. Remove the brisket from the oven, take it out of the foil and place it on a cutting board. Slice or shred the brisket and serve. You can discard any juice from the pan, or drizzle it over the beef for added flavor.

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